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Bucket Lister!! Less Than 100 Known!! $5 Gold Half Eagle Dug!!

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On 12/6/2017 at 10:37 AM, Cal_Cobra said:

This old site has produced a few rare coins, same place I dug my rare 1860-S Seated quarter....

Now I know I'm moving to California.  :biggrin:

Survival estimate on that one is only 275.  (Note there are large uncertainties on these survival esimates, but still.)  What was its condition?

Back to that rare $5 gold piece.  I wonder how it got to be there in the first place.  Did people really walk around the gold coins in their pockets?  $1 maybe (but these are so darn tiny it seems like you'd have trouble finding them when you needed to spend one).  I always figured that finding gold coins was mainly done by finding caches -- intentionally stored/hidden coins, not accidentally dropped ones.

  Apparently -- from what I've read -- even (silver) dollars weren't carried by individuals much in the East because of their bulkiness, at least after official US paper money was issued.  From the same article/book, though, it points out that in the US West there was less trust in paper money so dollar coins were more common.  Still, the fact that most of the Morgan silver dollars never made it into circulation (and were either melted or stored until the 1960's when they were made available to collectors) is a sign that in general they weren't popular.  Gold denominations were likely (just my opinion) even less circulated, at least partly because those denominations were a lot of money in the 1800's.  If you compare the conditions of surviving silver coins to surviving gold coins you get some evidence for this.  Most surviving silver coins (Morgan dollars a possible exception) are in low grades whereas gold coins tend to be in high grades.

I'm still fascinated you've found such rarities.  You have to be in the 99.99th percentile of coin hunters to have found even one of such rarities.  Two of them?  Wow!  Want to share with me that location?  Just post it here, I won't tell anyone.

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9 hours ago, LipCa said:

Here's the 1858S.... quick pics with phone so not very good.

Yours is a much better looking coin.

It's not obvious to me that this is true.  It does appear as though there's a slight 'ding' (warning: not official numismatic lingo) on the cheek but the overall grade looks similar.  Anyway, just a fantastic find.  Did you post more info (here or elsewhere) you can link to?  In particular I'm wondering what detector you found this with.

Upon further review: I think your 1858-S is closer to VF-35 and Cal_Cobra's 1865-S between EF-40 and EF-45.  Still, it's up to the professional graders to make the final call.  (Even they don't always agree, as has been shown by people resubmitting coins for grading.)

Here's the place to go to try one's own hand at grading.  That's what I just used:  https://www.pcgs.com/Photograde/#/5Lib/Grades

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No other post...

Found with the Gold Bug 2

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On 12/8/2017 at 11:27 PM, LipCa said:

Here's the 1858S.... quick pics with phone so not very good.

Yours is a much better looking coin.




Your's looks good to me, any way you slice it, it's a great find!

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An amazing and much sought after find by many detectorists for sure. Made more fun by the fact I had just heard from Brian before he made what turned out to be one of the best "last trips of the season" I ever heard of. A truly beautiful coin - congratulations Brian!

It may be like nugget hunting also in that the first one is by far the hardest. I suspect more gold coins are waiting in your future!!

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